SBC News Clever Advertising talks future trends, regional expertise, regulation & compliance

Clever Advertising talks future trends, regional expertise, regulation & compliance

Brazil. A country that has captured the attention of the industry for quite some time, but one that has exploded into prominence in recent times due to a much discussed green-light being issued regarding the adoption of online gambling regulation.

Fresh off the back of a successful SBC Summit Rio, Clever Advertising has reflected on this development and its own market stance, the importance of fostering local alliances, and, perhaps most crucially, how the company’s services can help others make waves within the industry.

Vanda Silva, Chief Corporate & Commercial Officer, Silvia Almeida, Chief Media Officer, Liliana Almeida, Head of Brand and Corporate Communications, and Marina Lima, Head of Influencers Division, a quartet who form part of the newly registered AMIG (Associaçao Mulheres da Indústria de Jogo), delve into this range of key issues.

Regulation

Despite welcoming the impending directives as long as they are done with care, Silva, who participated in Rio De Janeiro on a Affiliate Leaders panel, kicked things off by warning that “there have been some cases when it hasn’t been though”.

With this in mind, Clever Advertising, which, like much of the industry, emphasised a stance that “we’re a huge advocate for regulation”, elaborated on key considerations for those casting admiring glances towards new markets.

“The first is that it is always good to have guidance,” Silva commented. “You need to know how the market operates, where the boundaries are and where the lines are that you cannot cross. 

“When everyone understands this, it’s to the benefit of everyone, because it creates an even playing field for the entire industry. 

“For grey markets, however, it’s a completely different story and one that appears to be much more complicated.

“In the case of pre-regulated markets, it’s a bit more of an open show. People operate in a way that can be to the detriment of the entire industry. Self-regulation is incredibly important in this case.”

As Almeida (L) reiterated the numerous plus points for operators and affiliates in stepping into a regulated region, Silva continued by looking internally to discuss how Clever’s collaborative efforts can help organisations reap the commercial benefits of a white market.

“We have a clear understanding of who we can work with, what we can and can’t do,” she said. 

“We liaise with the compliance team and they help us to make sure we’re acting in accordance with the regulations. It’s also much easier to find a stable relationship with your partners. 

“From that perspective, it’s an easy sell for the commercial team, the media buyers and the corporate team too. Our compliance team is tailor made to meet the demands of the industry, or the partners of publishers.”

Compliance & collaboration

Almeida (S) continued the conversation by highlighting that the responsibility of compliance should run through all levels of a business, and not simply be designated to one specific, dedicated team.

Developing on this point further, it is noted that Clever boasts a team that is charged with evaluating different traffic sources and categorising them according to the goals of a client. This, it was added, enables partners to gain any information that is required as part of a “very transparent” process.

“Compliance doesn’t start or end with the commercial team, or the legal team, or even the compliance team,” Silva noted.

“It starts with everyone that works in our sector. Every media buyer knows what compliance is, what it means, and what the limits are for what we can do for a brand. That is a big part of the training that we offer.”

However, this is far from a simple process. As Almeida (L) explained, a significant overseas team provides much needed regional expertise, with external collaborations also critical in ensuring success.

“We have a big legal team and we cooperate with lawyers from all over the world,” she commented. “Having those boots on the ground knowledge really means that we are fully up to date with changing regulations. 

“At Clever, we are very agile with the process we have, so, if the law changes on advertising, for example, we can adapt very quickly. We can stop campaigns very quickly. We are also very proactive, so we have a good idea of what regulations will come into play and when.” 

Continuing the discussion, Lima touched upon Clever’s extensive experience in ensuring that the group remains successful in adapting to both new markets and conditions.

“We have learnt the different processes from very early on so now, we make sure we are proactive in knowing what is happening,” she stated.

“We also collaborate very closely with the brands that work with Clever, we speak to regulators and to the brands a lot too because we want to be at the front of the action. We need to be informed and prepared for any situation.”

Regional expertise

As regulatory changes become evident across a range of global jurisdictions, Clever points to the significant importance of fostering local relationships in staying one step ahead of any potential alterations.

These alliances, noted Almeida (S), allow organisations to “adopt a proactive stance toward potential changes”, as well as anticipating, and responding to, any such shifts in the landscape.

“Our cross-collaboration in different departments really helps us stay one step ahead when it comes to regulation,” she commented.

“Our legal team works with every different team at the company to make sure we are prepared for any changes. We try to keep an eye on the industry trends and consider market analysis, performance data and see how that impacts the market’s development. 

“I think our agility is one of our biggest assets – we can adapt very quickly and that really sets us apart. Our proprietary technology certainly helps too, as do the relationships we have with our network.” 

Adding: “At the beginning of COVID, it was a very difficult time for everyone in the gambling industry. But we had so many great publishers that we worked with that we could navigate that challenge. Those relationships played such an important role.”

Future trends – what’s next?

Despite the above representing a pair of key trends that have swept the industry across recent times, Almeida (L) was quick to look towards what is hailed as “a new beginning for the industry” that could see SEO take centre stage.

“Every year, everyone wants something new to happen,” she explained. So I’m pretty sure that when we get to 2024, a phrase or product will come along which will be the huge trend for that year. 

“But overall, at Clever, we will continue to structure our business and adapt to the new trends. This will not be our flagship strategy, but we will continue to advise our partners and help them to take advantage of tools that the market is offering.”

Adding: “Something that I do think that could be an important trend is SEO, which is something we are continuing to invest in. Even though SEO is one of the things that has existed since immemorial, there are still a lot of opportunities for SEO projects to grow. And we will continue to do that.”

Taking a different tack, Lima concluded: “We have a bold project which is 100 per cent focused on the influencer market; it’s something on Twitch, Kik, D Live, all the big platforms that will continue to be an asset for us.” 

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